So, now that Zeus has established that he will no longer be a tyrant, what, exactly, does he do as king?
Pause for jokes about who Zeus does.
You got it out of your system, yet?
Okay, I’ll wait.All right, we’ll be here for another year if I wait until everyone is finished.
So what does he do as king? Honestly, very little.
Basically, Zeus is there to mediate disputes among the gods. The thing is, he doesn’t really do this job. Most of the time he can’t be reached (yeah, because he’s on earth with other business). I think this is largely intentional because he doesn’t really want to deal with the petty squabbles of the gods.
Those times when he is actually reached for mediation, he kind of passes it off. If you remember the whole episode with Persephone, Zeus asked his mom Rhea to intervene. Now that we know what Zeus did to Rhea, it’s remarkable that she did intervene.
We’ve also got a couple of episodes involving Aphrodite and other goddesses (which I will go into more detail later). For the first, Zeus pawns the job off on a mortal, saying that he would be a better judge of things—which was very wise of Zeus.
The one time he actually does resolve a dispute, it’s about Adonis, between Aphrodite and Persephone, which I’ve already talked about. To sum up, he neatly divides the time into thirds, and walks away. So, yes, he does resolve some disputes, but most of the time he walks away from them.
I don’t believe this is an attempt to shirk responsibility. Rather, it’s because of the disposition of the other gods. We’ve gone through a lot of the gods and goddesses with their various shenanigans. We’ve also come to the conclusion that they’re pretty childish. If it was me, I wouldn’t want to have to mediate their petty disputes, so I’m sure Zeus doesn’t want to, either, hence why he hangs the Do Not Disturb sign on the hotel room door (of whichever goddess, nymph, mortal, or other being he’s with).
The fact is, whenever he would have to make a decision, those he’s mediating will never be happy with how he rules. They will just keep complaining or try and find a way to circumvent his decision (as Aphrodite did with Adonis). Instead, Zeus pours his energies into more important affairs (rimshot).